Recently, there has been a surge of information about hair relaxers and how they are linked to uterine fibroids in African American women. I do not believe everything I read, especially if it is posted on a social network. So I had to do my own research and what I found was pretty interesting.
Uterine fibroids are a buildup of non-cancerous muscle tissue found in the uterus. They can grow as large as an orange and are extremely uncomfortable. For some reason, they are found mostly in African-American women.
In my opinion, the correlation between fibroids and hair relaxers seem pretty sketchy. According to the American Journal of Epidemiology, women who relaxed their hair have a greater chance of getting fibroid tumors and young girls are more susceptible of starting their cycle at an early age.
Other researchers suggest that this is possible by the chemicals entering the body through the burns on the scalp. This issue I have with this information is this is all speculation—there was no hard evidence to be found.
It is no secret that African American women relax their hair more than any other ethnic group.
Based on the few blogs I’ve read and my conversations with other African American women, it’s just a coincidence that the women used in these studies just so happened to be Black women with chemically straightened hair. And because they are more likely to have fibroids, those in charge of these studies created this assumption.
Often times, I feel the information that is put out there is nothing but a tactic to scare people into jumping on the bandwagon and buying new products. And recently, this new wave of “all naturale” hair trends leads me to believe this is the same scenario.
I am certain that hair relaxers can do some damage to the hair and scalp if not used properly. The chemicals are pretty strong and will burn if left on the hair for an extended period of time.
However, to put out information that clearly requires more research is very misleading. There needs to be more concrete facts to support the link between hair relaxers and uterine fibroids.
For more information surrounding this topic, check out the links below and please leave your comments. I am very interested in hearing everyone’s opinion.